Popular for their tropical ornamental appearance, Queen Palms are rapid-growing palms that can be extremely prolific after flowering. Unfortunately, these require a large amount of rainfall and are susceptible to nutritional deficincies and fatal fungal diseases.
Syargus romanzoffina (Queen Palm)
Subspecies: none known
Native: South America (Brazil, Bolivia)
Hardiness Zones: 9B-11
Height: to 15 meters
Diameter: to 7 meters
Root System: fibrous, shallow
Growth Rate: relatively rapid (by palm standards) once established, up to 9 fronds per year and 1 meter of vertical growth
Age: begins flowering earliest at 6 years old, commonly to 20 years old
Tolerates: drought tolerance (moderate), salt tolerant (slightly), unaffected by lethal yellowing restraints
Problems (major): Palms suffer many nutritional deficiencies, including necrotic/curling/chlorotic leaveflet tips (Potassium (K) deficiency), yellow/chlorotic leaves (Iron (FE) deficiencies or alkaline soils), andcleaf shape distortion or improper direction of growth (Boron (B) deficiency). Ganoderma butt rot kills base of trunk and eventually entire plant (Ganoderma zonatum fungus, fruiting body (conk) appear prior to death). Theilaviopsis trunk rot (Theilavopsis paradoxa, fungus) soft rots trunk
just beneath crown if an open wound is present. Fusarium wilt (Fusarium oxysporum sp. palmarum, fungus) kills old petioles and leaflets first before rapidly moving onto new leaves and becoming fatal. The three fungal diseases are wind-dispersed and may be transmitted by using contaminated tools.
Problems (minor): palm leaf skeletonizer, mites, scale, fares poorly in very dry environments (such as Arizona)
Soil requirements: requires neutral to acidic, loamy to sandy, and well-drained soils
Air requirements: requires moderate humidity, fares poorly in deserts
Watering requirement: moderate
Sun requirement: full sun or nearly full sun necessary
Leaves: pinnate, feather-shaped, drooping/arching, dark green, serve as a Potassium/K source once dead, to 200 leaflets per leaf, leaf to 4.5m, leaflet lanceolate to 90 cm
Flower structure: very dense, cream/white-colored plumes/panicles, individual flowers to 1cm
Flowering frequency: spring-early summer
Fruit: round to ovate, bright orange, to 3 centimeters, extremely prolific, occurring in large clusters up to 45 kilograms containing up to 1,000 seeds
Seeds: various rates of germination after 6-24 weeks after soaking in water for 2 days
Trunk: light gray, to 37 centimeters
Form: tall, slender, with arching crown
This is on of the fastest growing juvenile palm species commercially sold today.
These are popular ornamental palms despite their susceptibility to fatal fungal infections and ailments caused by alkaline soil or nutrient deficiencies.
All of the images provided were taken by me. They may be used for educational/informational purposes only, provided that this article/online journal is appropriately cited first.